Mr Derk Sauer, a Dutch journalist active in Russia, in an interview with the Financial Times stated that Russian President Vladimir Putin is adopting Berlusconi’s methods in order to control Russia using the television.
Mr Berlusconi even allowed Mr Putin to hire Mr Angelo Codignoni, a high-ranking officer of Berlusconi’s TVs and party.
Mr Putin supported and expanded TRK, a private TV channel, to control private TV in addition to State-owned one. TRK used Government funds to progressively incorporate other private channels, and now it nearly monopolizes the business.
It is indeed a pattern very similar to the Italian one. In Italy, when Berlusconi is prime minister, he controls both the State TV and his own TVs, virtually monopolizing the sector.